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Case for bonus paymen

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#1
GEORGIA:

Hello all,

I worked for a company that hired me as a Supply Chain Inventory Analyst officially starting January 2nd, 2018. In my offer of employment I was offered a bonus that would pay out quarterly that was used to meet my salary expectations. My base salary was much lower than what me and my manager discussed with the condition that the bonus would compensate me in addition my base salary. This is how most if not all employees of the company are paid.

I resigned from my position effective April 2nd, 2018. Today I learned my former colleagues all received their bonus checks. When I called to see if I would be receiving one as well, I was informed that I was denied entitlement for the first quarter bonus.

I NEVER signed an employment contract with this company. I NEVER received an employee handbook. Nor was I made aware of any stipulations, requirements, or terms specifically regarding entitlement to the bonus. This also means I don’t know if I was an at-will employee or not.

The only thing I signed was my offer letter which detailed that I would receive a bonus every quarter. Again, no further detail other bonus teir level is mentioned. I have no way of quantifying the amount of the bonus other than the phone discussion I had with my manager about how much that would be. (We discussed Approx. $18,500 annually pre tax - or $4,625 quarterly pre tax)

I can post the offer letter with names and other personal info omitted if necessary.

I need help because I don’t know if I should pursue a case or not.


Any help would be great.

Thanks.
 


#2
Your offer letter is likely not going to rise to the level of an enforceable contract.

Does the employer have anything in the hand book about payment of bonuses after employees have been terminated?
 

xylene

Senior Member
#4
1. When did expect to receive your quarterly bonus?

2. I think given the timeline you present, you may not have been continuously employed for a full quarter.

3. You are talking about a lot of money and it may be worth consulting a lawyer.
 

cbg

I'm a Northern Girl
#6
It is common, and legal, for bonuses to be available only to those employees who are still employed on the day they are distributed.

Without something, in writing, that guarantees the bonus regardless, you are most likely out of luck. Particularly in a state like Georgia.
 
#7
Surew would help if you knew the ( supposed) reason your bonus was withheld.
The reason I was given was “that I had not been in my position long enough for the bonus”. But I know this is bull**** because employees have received bonuses at a pro rated amount. If you were employed for a day, You got paid for it.
 

Zigner

Senior Member, Non-Attorney
#8
The reason I was given was “that I had not been in my position long enough for the bonus”. But I know this is bull**** because employees have received bonuses at a pro rated amount. If you were employed for a day, You got paid for it.
But, according to you, your agreement is that you would get a bonus after you had worked there a quarter. No contemplation was made of proration at that time.
 
#11
It's a weak argument, but it could be argued otherwise.
I mean look. The letter says what is says. I was told I’d receive a bonus. No terms or conditions were defined other than it would be paid out every quarterly. I worked there a quarter. I just need to know if I’m wasting my time pursuing this or not.
 

cbg

I'm a Northern Girl
#12
I'm sure at the time the letter was written there was no thought on the part of the employer that you'd only work three months.
 

HRZ

Senior Member
#13
no you are not wasting your time ...but from what I read GA is not a very employee friendly state on such matters ...and you need to be able to prove all the points that bonus was earned per the enmploers rules...if there is a rule you forgot and flunked that rule it may be game over.

Can you prove the pro rata payouts ?
 

Zigner

Senior Member, Non-Attorney
#14
I mean look. The letter says what is says. I was told I’d receive a bonus. No terms or conditions were defined other than it would be paid out every quarterly. I worked there a quarter. I just need to know if I’m wasting my time pursuing this or not.
Disregarding my earlier post - what you were told is that bonuses were paid out quarterly. You weren't employed there when it was paid, so you didn't receive it. As previously mentioned, this is a common practice. You are free to seek the opinion of a local employment law attorney on this matter.
 
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